Wayner Couzens, who addmitted yesterday murdering a kind and caring stranger, Sarah Everard, orginally from York, now waits for his next date in court to hear just how long he will have to stay in jail for.
Metropolitan Police chief Cressida Dick has told the family she is “so sorry” for what happened but there are calls for a full investigation after it emerged that Couzens passed all vetting proceedures despite three allegations of indecent exposure against him.
It was something not mentioned on the Met Police statement on the case yesterday. Part of that said:
“Wayne Couzens transferred into the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), from the Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC), in September 2018. His first posting was to South Area, serving initially in a Safer Neighbourhood Team, before joining a response team covering the Bromley area in February 2019.
“He then moved to the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command in February 2020 where his primary role was to patrol diplomatic premises, mainly embassies.
“Following his arrest, a review confirmed he passed vetting processes.
“The checks confirmed there was no information available to the MPS at the time that would have changed the vetting decision.”
Couzens was not subject to any misconduct proceedings during his time at the Met
He stopped being paid as a police officer immediately following his earlier guilty pleas.
“This was as soon as legally possible. Internal misconduct procedures are now being progressed. Said the Met statement.
Couzens finally pleaded guilty to murdering Sarah yesterday (Friday) and was remanded into custody. He will next appear at the Old Bailey to be sentenced on Wednesday, 29 September.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) revealed that 12 Metropolitan Police officers are under investigation in relation to the case.
The Met and Kent Police are also under increasing pressure to reveal why Couzens was not investigated further over the THREE separate indecent exposure complaints from 2015.
The IOPC is investigating the Kent force over those complaints
There were protests about women’s safety following the death of Sarah Everard who, was abducted as she walked home in South London on the night of 3 March.
Her body was found near some land that Couzens owned in Kent a week later.
The Centre for Women’s Justice said on Twitter:
“There should be a full public enquiry into police failures and misconduct and the wider culture of misogyny”
Shadow home secretary Nick Thomas Symonds alos says the Met needs to review its vetting process.
One of the officers served with a misconduct notice was still on probation and shared an inappropriate graphic over social media before manning the cordon at the search.
Commissioner Cressida Dick said: “My thoughts and those of everyone in the Met Police are with Sarah’s loved ones. It is not possible for any of us to begin to imagine what they have been going through. I am so sorry.
The said every police officer feels betrayed.
“We are hugely indebted to Sarah’s family, friends and so many members of the public who helped the investigation in every single way they could, not least by making appeals and giving us information.
“No words can adequately express the profound sadness, anger and regret everyone in the Met feels about what happened to Sarah.